Sunday, March 30, 2014

Knitting Rebel

I'm such a rebel.

When it comes to knitting that is. Or I am just so clueless on how it is all done that I decide to figure it out myself and do things my way. Whether it is right or whether it is wrong!

So far I like the results.

I just started knitting and recently learned to crochet. You can read my post here about how I caught the knitting bug if you missed it.

Once I was comfortable enough to be on my own and know how to cast on and cast off stitches, I went crazy and bought yarn in all the colors I love. I kinda knew how many yards I needed on each skein to make a prayer shawl, but that's where my knowledge stopped!

I had size 15, size 13 and size 10 1/2 needles. My rebellion? I decided not to follow the recommended needle size on the yarn label.

My first ever knitting project was with homespun yarn on the size 15 needles, straight knitting. I finished that and half of another one my daughter had started. I was ready for something different to do than just knitting.

I wanted to make something chunky and spongy and cozy and soft. I bought regular worsted yarn, one in purple, one in red.

I decided to use the size 15 needles with the purple and do it all knit 1, purl 1. It definitely came out chunky, spongy and soft but what a pain it became changing the yarn back and forth every stitch!

I did a little research on for a different pattern that I could manage. I found one that is so pretty that I tried it on size 10 1/2 needles with the red yarn. It was knit 2, back knit 1, purl 1 repeat.
It was so hard to capture the true color and pattern. This is the best I can get!
While those two were going I found a one pound skein of the prettiest sage green yarn. Again I decided to go with a different pattern and a chunky look. I decided to do knit 2 purl 2 and repeat this on every row. It gave the shawl a thick, chunky, springy texture and is so pretty. I used a size 13 needle to achieve the look.

At this point I had 3 shawls going at once. I could whip through the purple and sage one but that red one was getting to me. You see, you have to really pay attention to what you are doing. And after having several inches done I realized that it was going to be too narrow for a prayer shawl. I hadn't accounted for the tighter knitting pattern on the smaller needles. After ripping rows and rows out many times to fix my not paying 100% attention mistakes, I put it away for now to finish it when my life is quieter and my mind is not going in a hundred different directions all the time......maybe when I am 85 in my rocking chair!

I finished the purple and sage shawls and now I am ready to put borders on them. They turned out so springy and spongy that they looked too narrow. They really aren't, as they are just supposed to go around your shoulders, and they stretch perfectly to do just that.  I decided they needed fancy borders to look finished, and wider!

My dear friend Katherine showed me how to crochet a shell stitch today at our Prayer Shawl knitting get together. First I single crocheted 6 rows in a multicolored pastel yarn and am now working on a ruffle with the shell stitch.

Meanwhile, while shopping in JoAnn Fabrics I found such pretty yarn on sale that I had to get it for another prayer shawl. I was ready for just plain, mindless knitting again and so on the size 13 needles I was able to knit through this one in a week. Gotta go back now to get some complimentary yarn for the border. I went through all 647 yards of yarn, again because of the larger size needles that I insist on using! It came out so pretty....

At this point you might think I am crazy with all these knitting projects going at once. Maybe I should just stay out of JoAnn's because the last time I was in there I had to get this gorgeous yarn and start another prayer shawl. Bonnie is going to be so proud!! (You will have to read my previous post to understand!)

I sit and knit every evening while watching the news and Wheel of Fortune (do I sound 85 already?) I switch off from the crocheted shell border to the straight knitting of the shawl. Both things hurt my arthritic hands after awhile so it is less painful to switch back and forth.

No, I am not giving it up because of the pain! I am having to much fun experimenting with yarn and different size needles.

I am a rebel like that, ya know.

AnnMarie xo

I am linking up with these great blog parties this week:

Sweet & Savoury Sundays
A Bouquet of Talent Linky Party
Snickerdoodle Sunday
diy Sunday Showcase
Amaze Me Monday
Make It Pretty Monday
Treasure Box Tuesday
Nifty Thrifty Tuesday
You're Gonna Love It Tuesday
Wednesday's Adorned From Above Blog Hop
What's It Wednesday
Thursday Favorite Things Blog Hop
Showcase Your Talent Thursday
Treasure Hunt Thursday
Share Your Cup Thursday
What to Do Weekends


  1. Looks like you taught yourself well! :D No - you don't sound like you are 85 already. My daughter crochets and she is in her 30's. She did a lot of it while sitting in the pick up lane at school waiting on the children, and also when it was so bitter cold this Winter and could not get out.
    I never learned to knit or crochet - tried knitting one time and gave up.
    Have a great week.

  2. I can relate to this - I too usually have at least 2 knitting projects and 1 or 2 crochet projects going at all times. I also sew so I knit and crochet in between sewing. Knitting and crochet are good to do while watching TV - I agree. I don't watch that much TV but there are a few shows I watch every week for about an hour. I also take my knitting in the car while waiting at school for my kids to come out I can knit several rows.

  3. So nice! Love that purple! But yikes on the k1p1 project!! :-)

  4. You look like you're a pro, AnnMarie! Do you sell your finished kitting projects on your Etsy store? You do a beautiful job :)

    Happy Monday and hugs to you!

  5. Your work is so lovely & I am envious. Always wanted to do one craft or the other & you can do both!! Wish my Grammy had taught me. The arthritis is a challenge for certain but I'm glad you're being a REBEL & not giving up!! ♥

  6. This made me laugh - because I can totally relate! I have an entire drawer in my office/craft room of "Crochet projects still in progress"! Ha!!


  7. Beautiful projects! I wish I knew how to knit, I'd feel so accomplished wearing something I made myself :P

  8. oh I love all your colors! Too funny because when I started crochet I did the same thing - whatever needle I wanted and to heck with the instructions :) I hear you about your hands too - if I crochet too long my hands up to my elbows start to hurt. Maybe I should learn to knit and pass off between the two like you! :) I think you are the Queen of Prayer Shawls now AnnMarie!

  9. Hi and wow what lovely shawls you are making Ann Marie! I love the color yarn you have chosen and how you added crochet to the projects too. Have fun with the knitting and crocheting.
    Julie at Julie's Lifestyle

  10. Lovely knitting, yarns and colours are gorgeous! Knitting is so relaxing, enjoy yours :) Would love to have you visit my blog sometime :)
    Hope you have a wonderful day and week!
    Hugs from Portugal,

    Ana Love Craft

  11. Hi AnnMarie,

    Kudos to you for taking up a new hobby, and one that is quite challenging, (for me, anyway), and giving it such a new custom spin! My goodness; what energy you possess! All your projects in the making are pretty and I especially like the purple-y one!

    Have a lovely week!


  12. Oooh.. I love all the colors you're using! My favorite is the border you're putting on the purple prayer shawl!

  13. Great job teaching yourself (nicely illustrated in photos, too)! Aren't we supposed to have a few projects going at once? I mostly crochet and like to have something easy for traveling and leave the more complex projects for home. And I, too, hope knitting/crocheting in the evening doesn't make me 'old'. It's how I stay awake:) Sometimes it gets a little tricky when we decide to watch a foreign film with subtitles!

  14. A small prayer shawl ministry just recently started up at my church. We've had 2 meetings. Don't do anything regular yet. I like the idea of yours meeting at a coffee spot. I'll bring that up. I've made 2 so far and working on the 3rd. Getting yarn and "crafts bits 'n pieces" in Fairport.

  15. I like the shawls, but I'm not sure what a prayer shawl is,
    Do you wear one while you pray? Do you get cold? Is it necessary in order to pray correctly? Just wondering since I've never heard of them before.

  16. AnnMarie, I want to learn to knit and crochet!! My daughter just sat down one day and taught herself, like you did, and now wants me to try it, too! Your creations are so lovely- thank you for sharing this with us at Treasure Box Tuesday! :)

  17. I'd love to learn how to knit I just haven't the time to get around to it. Thanks for linking up to Sweet and Savoury Sunday, stop by and link up again this weekend!

  18. I know what you mean about the yarn in the store, it's so pretty and hard to pass up! My daughter and I took knitting classes in the fall but I need some refresher classes to get me going again.

    I would like to invite you to my very first link up, it's live right now ~ it's a swap! I would love to have you come by and join in. ~Ann

    Tarnished Royalty


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